Hanoi (VNA) -Over 90 percent of Vietnamese suffer from dentaldisease and 85 percent of Vietnamese children have tooth decay, according tothe National Hospital of Odonto-Stomatology.
Surveysconducted by the hospital show an alarming rate of dental problems among thecountry’s young: 85 percent of children aged 6 to 8 have decayed baby (milk)teeth, while 54.6 percent in the 9-11 age group have permanent tooth decay. Thenumber of people suffering dental caries increases in accordance with their ageand the severity.
The rateof children with severely crooked teeth stands at around 80-90 percent. Expertssaid this was due to children’s baby teeth not receiving proper treatment.
Thesurveys also found that two-thirds of children aged between 6 and 14 never hada dental check-up. Worse still, 100 percent of primary school students are notin the habit of brushing their teeth three times a day.
Trinh DinhHai, Director of the National Hospital of Odonto-Stomatology, said a shortageof dentists and lack of fluoride in drinking water could contribute tocavities.
A lack ofprofessional doctors as well as hesitation to go to see the dentist were themain reasons for the high percentage of people suffering from tooth decay, hesaid.
Accordingto the Vietnam Odonto-Maxillo-Facial’s figures, there is one dentist in Vietnamfor 25,000 people, whereas in developed countries the rate is one per1,000-2,000 people.
Gumdisease and dental inflammation are the most common oral diseases that causeteeth loss in people over 45, Hai said.
He warnedthat if the disease was not treated in time and properly, it would effectgeneral wellness and appearance.
Statisticsfrom the health care sector show that the rate of people losing teeth may be ashigh as 6.64 per cent for those 45 and older.
Recognisingthe importance of oral health care, a dental school programme has beenconducted across the country since 1990, covering all 63 provinces. Under theprogramme, schools hold an annual teeth brushing festival day and otherinformational activities.
TheMinistry of Education and Training and odontology hospitals have joinedtogether to raise public awareness of oral health, particularly among primaryschool children. However, due to limited financial resources and lack ofprofessional health workers, the dental school programmes did not yield thedesired results, experts said.
To preventthe epidemic of tooth decay, adults and children in Vietnam are advised tobrush their teeth at least twice a day, or after meals, and to see a dentistevery six months.
Inaddition, special attention should be paid to children’s diets. They should eatfruits and cereal, and less sweet food.-VNA
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